Alcohol abuse can affect both the mind and body. Thorough treatment for alcohol abuse can address both issues at the same time. Substance abuse recovery models in New Jersey can take a multi-pronged approach depending on the individual’s needs.
Stages of Alcohol Abuse
Just like there are different stages of recovery, the stages of alcohol abuse can also vary. The early stages may not indicate full blown alcohol abuse, but can signal a potential problem. Early warning signs can include frequent social drinking, drinking to decrease stress or an increase in frequency. Those who find themselves in the early stages may notice it takes more alcohol to feel the impact they once had with a smaller number of drinks.
The second stage usually emerges after a first alcohol-related black out. There may be guilt surrounding alcohol use combined with extreme discomfort when trying to resist drinking. Secrecy surrounding how much or how often one drinks can also appear during this stage. Friends or loved ones may or may not notice a problem at this stage.
The middle stages of alcohol abuse include impaired functioning. It is important to remember that even those with alcohol abuse disorders can often keep a job, but other responsibilities may prove to be too much. Drinking while driving, an increase in irritability and weight gain are common side effects.
The final stages of alcohol abuse can have extreme physical consequences. Alcohol may be used throughout the day and without it, hand tremors may be present. Late stage physical disabilities can include cirrhosis of the liver or even dementia. Paranoia is also commonly reported during this stage.
Alcohol Abuse Can Cause Multiple Problems
Alcohol and substance abuse can be extremely problematic for the individual and their surrounding social circle. Once alcohol consumption has grown out of control, it may become the sole focus of the individual’s mind. Obtaining alcohol, drinking alcohol and recovering from alcohol can take away meaningful relationships, physical and mental health.
Physical conditions alcohol may cause include:
- Liver disease
- Cancer of the mouth
- Heart disease
- Fetal alcohol syndrome
- Breast cancer
- Irritable bowel syndrome
While not all people who suffer from alcohol abuse experience these physical conditions, many do. Depending on the advancement of alcohol abuse, the likelihood of serious illnesses like cancer and liver disease increase.
Emotional and cognitive issues from alcohol abuse can include:
- Memory loss
- Lowered inhibitions and impulse control
To effectively recover from alcohol abuse, taking an inventory of the individual’s entire health is key. By healing both the emotional and cognitive issues as well as the physical, the decision-making process is often better.
Treatment For Alcohol-Related Disabilities
Depending on the disability, treatment can be provided in a variety of forms. Certain disabilities may be best treated in a hospital. This is especially true for serious physical health conditions such as cancer, pancreatitis or cirrhosis of the liver.
Not all physical health conditions caused by alcohol abuse must be treated in an inpatient or hospital setting. Depending on the treatment program and location, health conditions such as anemia or alcohol withdrawal symptoms. Since many people with alcohol abuse disorder are anxious of alcohol withdrawal, many find comfort from having medical help during this time period.
Alcohol withdrawal symptoms can be dangerous without proper treatment. Withdrawal is not the same as a hang-over. Those who suffer from withdrawal experience the side effects due to an absence of alcohol in the body. The process of alcohol withdrawal can be lethal if it is not monitored and addressed by trained professionals.
Alcohol withdrawal may include symptoms such as anxiety, hand tremors, racing heart rate, vomiting, headache, sweating and insomnia. For severe cases, some may experience hallucinations and seizures. This typically happens within the first two days without alcohol.
In addition to alcohol withdrawal treatment, many individuals seek professional care to help with other alcohol-related disabilities. These are often cognitive or psychiatric issues that may arise from drinking large amounts of alcohol over a long period of time.
In New Jersey, treatment centers can provide help for emotional, cognitive and social issues. Since anxiety is commonly reported in those with alcohol abuse issues, medication may be an option. Other commonly prescribed medication includes anti-depressants or other non-addictive forms of treatment.
Social anxiety can be disabling after battling alcohol abuse. Many experience shame or guilt associated with their social interactions since many revolved around alcohol. Since many people who have abused alcohol did not feel in control of their behavior or actions, socializing can seem daunting. Using alcohol as a crutch for social interaction is frequent among those who abuse alcohol and without it, may feel more inhibited or uncomfortable.
Alcohol abuse can lead to a variety of both physical and psychiatric disabilities. Whether experiencing anxiety or cirrhosis of the liver, treatment can take many forms. By providing a full range of treatment options, recovery has the highest rate of success.